Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Glad tidings from Gladstone, Australia and a bit of advice for Prince Rupert

The Curtis Island LNG project in
Gladstone, Australia 

(image from the Bechtel project page)
Last week the Northern View offered up an overview of a recent Chamber of Commerce presentation by Melissa Case, a representative from the global industrial company Bechtel and a former resident of Gladstone, Australia now based in Prince Rupert working as the community relations manager for the global engineering company.

Bechtel was awarded the contract for the proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal project back in 2013.

Ms. Case shared her review of how the LNG industry arrived in the Queensland State of Eastern Australia and the key areas that Prince Rupert may wish to address when it comes to any anticipated growth.

A theme from the Chamber meeting which the Northern View provided some background on.

Lessons from Down Under: Gladstone, Prince Rupert's sister city?

So taken by the presentation was the weekly paper, that in an editorial last week they noted with some alarm that Prince Rupert's City Council had not yet picked up the phone and urged Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Brain to get in touch with officials in the Australian community, suggesting it was time to call our sister.

In Our Opinion: Call your sister

As it turns out, our sister already has had offered up some counsel for our community, with a paper in Gladstone, Australia taking note of the interest in how development there had taken place with some background on the LNG story from Australia.

The Gladstone Observer provides their own observations on both the industry and the "strangely" named town of Prince Rupert" (an interesting note from a country with its own creative town names such as Banana, Chinchilla, Woolloomooloo and Kooloonooka and a range of others stretched across the South Pacific continent) as well as some thoughts on what the Bechtel boom as they call it, delivered in  that community.

And while the article from the Observer itself is a fairly good account of events, it's the comments and advice from Gladstone residents that provide for an interesting review of how that community handled the challenges of growth that LNG brought there.

The full article and growing list of comments is available for review here.

Among the contribution to the comments section was a correspondence from Ms. Case who shares her observations on LNG and her affection for Prince Rupert for the folks back home.

Gladstone is fortunate to have such a large industry base that provides stable employment for so many people, invests so much money into the community and largely supports all of the local businesses in town. We take it for granted, and don't appreciate what we have. When I see people desperate to work, struggling every day to feed their families, local businesses trying so hard to keep their doors open and so much homelessness and poverty I have realised what a charmed life we have in Gladstone. 

Prince Rupert is a beautiful community full of amazing, positive people. I have completely fallen in love with this place and its people and will do anything I can to help them out. I am excited for this community's future and feel fortunate to be here to share lessons learnt from my home town and help navigate the community on their journey. -- Ms. Melissa Case, the sustainability and community relations manger for Bechtel Corporation in Prince Rupert providing the view from Prince Rupert for the folks back home in Gladstone

Readers of the Observer newspaper in Gladstone Australia
have provided some comments on LNG development to consider
after an article on Prince Rupert's plans appeared 
Other reviews from those on the other side of the Pacific Ocean provide for what may become familiar themes for North Coast residents, particularly when it comes to issues of housing issue and the impressions of some on some of the changes that the industry delivered to Gladstone, a community of some thirty thousand residents North of Brisbane.

The comments also highlights that when it comes to the development of LNG resources and terminal projects, differing opinions and controversy is a common thing far beyond the North Coast of British Columbia.

A look at what the LNG industry looks like in Gladstone can be found from Bechtel Curtis Island LNG project page

The community is host to the Santos GLNG terminal, the Australia Pacific LNG project

Included in the Gladstone Observer article were a few other items that might be of interest to North Coast Residents.

Gladstone and 'LNG service centre' in Curtis Island new phase
Curtis Island LNG exports create 'winners and losers'
Curtis Island case against CFMEU reps 'a bloody disgrace'
Company chooses Santos for $6M after Curtis Island GLNC job

A review of the Chamber of Commerce presentation from mid May was also provided by CFTK TV, you can learn more about the topic here.

You can review the list of proposed LNG projects for the North Coast and Northwest BC from our archive page here.

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